Some New Words

One of the advantages of a proper education in Western Civilization that included ancient languages is the ability to coin new technical and scientific words without having to resort to Newspeak. Take the word hoplophobia for example. Jeff Cooper created the term by combining the Greek words όπλο (weapon) and φοβία (fearfulness) to describe the irrational fear of weapons. It succinctly describes an attitude held by many who favor suppression of Second Amendment rights. BTW, it is more on point than the misuse of the -phobia suffix in the words homophobia and Islamophobia which seems to mean the hatred of homosexual and muslims rather than the fear of them. A proper Greek-derived suffix for hatred would be -echtra.

I see a need for a couple of new phobia-suffix words to describe attitudes that are becoming prevalent in our public discourse. They are epistimiphobia and altitheiaphobia.

The first is based on επιστήμη which means science, so it means an irrational fear of science. I believe it will be useful in describing the sort of person who clings to a particular hypothesis long after it has been falsified repeatably because of an emotional investment a false belief.

The second is based on αλήθεια which meant truth or reality. It means an irrational fear of the truth. I believe it will be useful in describing  the sort of person who is even further along in his denial than an epistimiphobe.

The guy who is still wearing two masks in the park may be an epistimiphobe, but if believes that he is a woman, he’s probably an alitheiaphobe.

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